Five great destinations for winter sun in Europe5x winter sun in Europe

Some of us become ecstatic when the first snowflakes begin to fall. But not you, as you're not a fan of those cold, dark winter months. You couldn't care less about winter socks and gloves – so put on your sunglasses because these destinations are going to treat you to some much-needed vitamin D!
Marseille during winter

1. Marseille

If you like sea and sun, Marseille is the place to be! Lying on the beach is rather unlikely at this time of year, but you will be charmed by a (heated) terrace with views over the charming Old Port. And when you are in the attractive port city, a visit to the Notre-Dame de la Garde Basilica is a must. Even if religious monuments aren't really your thing, you'll enjoy this excursion, because the basilica sits at the highest point of the city. After a tough climb, you'll be rewarded with a breathtaking view. If you don't feel up to the climb, you can simply hop on the tourist train that goes from the Old Port to the basilica.

HOW? Travel from Brussels-Midi directly to Marseille with TGV Brussels-France.

2. Rome

The South of Europe even caters for seasoned city-goers during the winter months. Anyone who's been there once can vouch for that: Rome is a city to fall in love with! The Colosseum, the Roman Forum, the Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps, the Pantheon, St. Peter's Basilica... When the low winter sun casts its rays over these world-famous sites, it's as if you've stepped into a painting! And a real Italian espresso instead of that cup of coffee at work? You wouldn't say no to that now, would you?

HOW? Travel via Paris to Milan with TGV France-Italy and then switch to the Italian network.
The Colosseum, Rome
Aix-en-Provence during winter

3. Aix-en-Provence

Ah, Provence! The taste of the South of France! We won't claim that you'll be walking around Aix-en-Provence without a jacket all winter long. However, with any luck, the sun will be shining so you can wander around one of the markets under a radiant sky, with the scents and colours of Provence putting you immediately in the holiday mood. Continue leisurely along through the picturesque streets of the historic centre. On the way, you're guaranteed to be tempted to try the local speciality, the calisson, a delicious sweet that even has its own museum in the city!

HOW? Travel from Brussels-Midi directly to Aix-en-Provence with TGV Brussels-France.

4. Seville

In the southern city of Seville, you're sure to get more than a little sun. Even in the middle of winter, the weather here is perfect for sitting outside on a terrace. And in Andalusia, where there's a terrace, there's tapas. Is your mouth already watering? Your culture-loving heart will also be pampered in this city – Seville Cathedral is the biggest Gothic church building in the world. Opposite the cathedral, you can enter a real fairytale palace. The Royal Alcázar will overwhelm you with its beautiful halls, mosaics and colonnades, as well as its luscious palace gardens. Add a flamenco performance and you've got all the ingredients for a perfect holiday.

HOW? Travel to Seville with your Interrail Pass.
Royal Alcázar, Seville
Praia da Marinha, Algarve, during winter

5. Faro and the Algarve

Choose the Portuguese city of Faro as your base for exploring the Algarve, where you just might discover the most beautiful beaches our continent has to offer. The golden sand is part of the charm, but it's still mainly the breathtaking rock formations that draw attention. The whimsical shapes that rise up from the ocean at Praia da Marinha have already adorned numerous postcards. It might be a bit chilly to go swimming, but you can certainly enjoy the beautiful surroundings in peace – without hordes of tourists around you.

HOW? Travel to Faro with your Interrail Pass.